Title: Using cognitive task similarities to compare UAS control station designs to air traffic control workstations: a pilot study

Authors: Patrick K. Doyle; Christina H. Rinaudo; Reuben F. Burch V; Kari Babski-Reeves

Addresses: Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS, USA ' Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS, USA ' Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS, USA; Department of Human Factors and Athlete Engineering, Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems (CAVS), Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS, USA ' Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS, USA

Abstract: This study examines possible similarities between the cognitive tasks of air traffic control specialists (ATCS) and unmanned aircraft system (UAS) pilots as a pilot study to determine if the results from air traffic control (ATC) human factors research can be applied to the creation of Federal Aviation Administration UAS control station design standards. Ultimately, demonstrating such similarities in a pilot study could provide a safer and more cost-efficient avenue for UAS integration into the National Aerospace System as gaps in UAS research could then be filled by existing ATC studies rather than through the commissioning of new studies. In this study, an empirical analysis was conducted on possible similarities through an extensive literature review and a small population sampling. The results of this study support the existence of similarities between the cognitive tasks of ATCSs and UAS pilots; however, these findings are preliminary. Further research is needed to prove the applicability of ATC studies to UAS research.

Keywords: air traffic control; ATC; unmanned aircraft systems; UAS; human factors; vigilance; attention; cognitive workload; situation awareness; aircraft displays; workstation design; remote pilot in charge.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHFE.2020.109569

International Journal of Human Factors and Ergonomics, 2020 Vol.7 No.2, pp.174 - 190

Received: 18 Dec 2019
Accepted: 26 Apr 2020

Published online: 28 Aug 2020 *

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